Co-dependency might best be described as a love addiction. You may be in a great, loving relationship, but when co-dependency creeps in, you start needing each other for all the wrong reasons. These relationships can grow to be very destructive and emotionally exhausting. You end up losing yourself and your sense of self-worth. But it's all good: there are ways to break the destructive cycle and still keep your love in tact. Here are some common character traits of a co-dependent, and guidelines
There's a girl in your political science class that you’re attracted to. You’d like to get to know her better, but the thought of even saying hello makes you sick to your stomach.
You’re at the grocery store and you see a colleague from work pushing a cart with his kids. Instead of saying hi and taking part in some small talk, you turn your cart the other direction and do what you can to avoid him.
You’re new in town and would like to make some friends. There’s a men’s group at your church that you go to, but you never come early and you leave as soon as it’s over so you can avoid having to engage the guys in conversation.
How many times have you felt upset by something your male partner said or didn't say, did or didn't do and then found yourself concluding that whatever the issue it results from his very maleness, from the sheer fact that he is a man, that he simply "can't help it." Certain notes are sounded again and again when women talk about trouble with their men: "But you know, that's how men are" or, "He's a man after all, its not his fault" or, "MEN!" Typically the women listening nod and laugh, bursting with agreement. These and other platitudes are recited as a way to minimize their distress and frustration. However, this tendency to dismiss males as genetically deficient reinforces for them the idea that it is not safe to fully be themselves with their female partners.
It’s been interesting to watch this series unfold this week. Though I knew it would be controversial, I wasn’t sure what to expect and how much interest there would actually be in the topic.
As it happened, the posts received massive amounts of traffic. And while there was definitely vocal opposition to the arguments I laid out, these were fewer in number than I expected. This may be partly chalked up to the fact that AoM’s readership tends to skew more traditional and religious (even though we actively welcome men from all backgrounds) – guys who are likely more interested in this topic than the general population. But I also have to think that there are tons of men – conservative and liberal alike — that aren’t completely happy with the role of porn in their lives, for whatever reason. I’ve long felt that there are a bunch of things in our culture towards which the media relentlessly presents a viewpoint that supposedly everyone shares, and people don’t feel comfortable publicly admitting that it just isn’t working that way in their own personal lives. I think the idea of porn use as harmless and casual is one of those things.
Mark Manson offers up some refreshingly simple solutions for why you can't seem to find a healthy relationship.
Nobody wins on Valentine’s Day. The holiday puts everyone in an awkward situation.
If you’re not seeing anybody, then it’s an incessant and unnecessary reminder of your solitude. If you are seeing someone, but aren’t serious yet, then you have this awkward, “Should I say something? Should I not?” situation where you’re afraid that no matter what you do, it’ll give the wrong impression. And if you are in a relationship, then there’s all sorts of heightened expectations for chocolate and dinners and candles and violins and puppies and other crap, all of which will at best come across as forced and at worst be entirely disingenuous.
Jordan Gray says that there are seven simple things that basically all men crave in an intimate relationship.
Men are often reluctant to talk about their needs in intimate relationships.
Whether social conditioning or an inability to communicate our needs are to blame, men (who tend to be the less communicative partners in intimate relationships) are prone to silently suffering when their emotional needs aren’t being met by their partners.
Whether you are a man or a woman reading this article, this will give you greater clarity into yourself/partner and what your/their needs are in your intimate relationship.
Let’s put an end to the needless fighting due to miscommunication, the unnecessary sex-less nights, and the verbal shut-downs.
Read through these tips and I promise you’ll never see your relationship through the same lens again.
Here are seven things men want in a relationship...
What's the one thing you should be looking for in a partner? Mark Manson has a pretty good idea, and it's not what you think…
There were a few comments yesterday from people about my post on how to date amazing women saying it was too extreme and that everyone has faults. Well, of course, everyone has faults. It’s impossible to find someone without some emotional baggage or insecurities. The real question is, what does that person do with it?
In the first two articles of this series, I pointed out how to notice emotionally manipulative behavior and how to avoid women who display it. These were women who had problems and baggage and used them as a weapon with the men they date. In this article, I will be talking about the traits that you want to actively look for in a relationship parter when deciding to date or commit to them. To give a hint, it’s looking for people who manage their personal flaws and baggage well. -
"Starting to date again after a breakup is a nerve-wracking experience. What if you get rejected? What if you end up comparing someone new to your ex and it makes you sad? What if your first date as a singleton is a bust? What if… your date is so awkward already that it actually gets better when you accidentally set your hair extensions on fire? (Okay, that last one was stolen from the Anna Farris comedy What’s Your Number?, but hey, it could happen.) It might take some time, but one day you’ll be ready to date again. Here are some signs that it’s a healthy time to start."
Raymond Bechard discusses the trend of current relationships and the top 15 reasons why they just won't work out.
I was talking to a guy installing carpet in a friend’s home the other day. For some reason, he asked my advice on whether or not he should have a surprise birthday party for his girlfriend. “She’s hitting the big 4-0, so I don’t know if she wants to celebrate it or ignore it,” he said. That made sense, some people would rather not draw attention to birthdays ending in zeros. So I asked him a simple question, “Is she a positive person? You know, does she usually look on the bright side of things?”
His face immediately lit up as he reached for his phone. “Take a look at her face and you’ll know.” He held up the phone with the beaming photo of his girlfriend, who looked no more than 27, tops. As he showed me her picture, he said the five best words I have ever heard to describe a relationship that is working – at least from a man’s perspective, “She makes every day better.” - See more at: http://goodmenproject.com/sex-relationships/how-to-lose-a-guy-forever/#sthash.1irZJXtw.dpuf
"We all know it's common to "kiss a lot of frogs" before finding the right partner. The good news? It's all worth it, because once you do find your match everything else begins to fall into place. Last year, I was insecure about having a serious boyfriend when I didn't have full-time employment. I thought I had nothing to offer without a cool job, but the man I adore ended up helping me get to where I need to be career-wise, and the individual you're meant to end up with will do the same and more. You may not immediately know that your significant other is going to be your spouse someday, but here are some signs that you two are bound for life."
Here are my 10 warning signs that you may be too trusting. Are you trusting too much? Learn more how to have better relationships.
You feel like a complete idiot when it happens.
At first there’s complete shock and disbelief.
Then when reality sinks in, you want to punch somebody’s lights out.
“How could I have been so stupid?” “Why didn’t I see it coming?” “I can’t believe she would do that to me.”
We’ve all been there. We’ve trusted someone we care about — a lover, a spouse, a friend, even our kids — and they blindside us with lies, deception, and manipulation. The first time it happens, it’s shocking and deeply painful. The person we love, the person we thought we knew and could depend on, has pulled the rug out from underneath us and betrayed our trust.
They say nice guys finish last and—for most of us—that’s probably true, considering the not-so-nice ones we’ll often date before meeting Mr. Right. In fact, for reasons that are largely intangible, even the most intelligent, self-possessed women have fallen for classic jerks at some point.
In retrospect, most of us are able to understand that these guys weren’t right for us, but getting to that place probably wasn’t easy. It’s because of that we decided to put together a primer to help other women gauge whether the guys they’re dating right now are good ones, or total a-holes. Read on, dear friends, for 10 signs your boyfriend is an unequivocal jerk.
A reader said there were no good guides to courting a good man. So Thomas Fiffer wrote one.
A good man, as the saying goes, is hard to find. Well, not really. There are millions of good men out there. Millions. Good men whose intentions are honorable. Good men whose behavior towards women is kind and respectful. Good men who appreciate love and value commitment. Good men who hew to a code of morality and decent conduct in their personal and professional lives. Good men who don’t need to be bad boys to prove themselves. And these good men are not hiding. They’re everywhere, in plain sight. The young cashier at the supermarket who asks how your day is going. The guy jogging along the bike path who smiles as you pass by. The weary commuter coming home on the late evening train with a bunch of flowers on the empty seat next to him. Some of these good men are already taken. But many are not. Many are available and looking for a good partner—a person who shares their values, appreciates their efforts, and treats them with respect. Recently, a reader wrote in to The Good Men Project and asked if we could provide her with a guide to how to court a good man. - See more at: http://goodmenproject.com/ethics-values/how-to-court-a-good-man-5-dos-and-5-donts-fiff/#sthash.fAp9QlJJ.dpuf
"Finding your soul mate is basically finding that one person (arguably one of several) who has the right traits – traits that are relevant to you as an individual. In other words: You have to find a person whom you can put up with and who, more importantly, can put up with you.
Plus all that lovey-dovey stuff, of course. If love isn’t much more than the way that you perceive a person, then you need to find someone who you can perceive as being amazing for as long as you live. Just as importantly, you need to find a person who can put up with all of your sh*t.
Because, let’s be honest, we all have a lot of sh*t that our soul mates will need to put up with. Here are 10 traits that your soul mates should have and that, ipso facto, you should have in his or her eyes:"
"How do you know if you are passive-aggressive? Aside from the obvious wake of people who won’t get close to you, there are certain things to think about to determine if your behavior is passive-aggressive according to a life coach."
Good news, people are not passive-aggressive by nature. It’s their communication and conflict management patterns that are, and these are learned. Luckily, those patterns can change with some insights, skills and relationship help. So, if this post helps you see your passive-aggressive behaviors, you will understand why others find it difficult to be around on you, trust you, and respect you as you would like to be trusted and respected. You confuse them. People move away from folks who purposefully confuse them — if they are smart.
The other day, I shared some signs that may indicate you’ve found true love with the man of your dreams. But what if you have deeper doubts? You know it’s not true love (yet), but you think there may be a chance for your love to grow, given time.
So let’s say your new romantic partner doesn’t seem to need a lot of change. You’re pretty happy with him the way he is. But you still have a few doubts brewing before you’re ready to say, “I do.”
Still, you’re seeing some red flags that are telling you this person is not only NOT “the one,” but that you might actually be in a toxic relationship.
Our incompleteness is the gravitational pull towards one another, as if we inherently know that there is something in the meeting that is more than us and has something to add to our completeness."
I would like to dispel the popular new age myth that we are complete and whole on our own, without each other.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard this message and the number of ways it’s been packaged by well-meaning teachers, writers, gurus, etc. And while a part of me wants to take comfort in it (an existential ice cream fix), more often than not it leaves me feeling bereft. Like the way you feel when your heart knows it’s heard a lie even though your mind argues for its veracity.
The truth is, I don’t believe we are actually whole and complete. And I mean this in the dualist sense; because that is the reality we are living in. I believe we came from wholeness and I believe we return to wholeness, but I do not believe we are whole in this manifestation.
Forget about ripped abs, bulging biceps, and a flat stomach, as well as a fat bank account, friends in high places, and your own private jet. These six personality traits power the pull of magnetic attraction.
It’s nearing the end of the day and the weekend’s approaching. Are you getting ready to go home to your lover and making fun weekend plans? Or are you reading advice articles and wondering why, despite your hours at the gym and in those continuing ed classes, that special someone you desire so dearly to date—and perhaps move in with or marry—never seems to materialize? Some people choose a single life, and embracing solitude doesn’t mean staying solitary or feeling unfulfilled. But for those who are seeking—and not finding—the perfect partner of your dreams, the list below offers some surprises on what people truly find irresistible. - See more at: http://goodmenproject.com/ethics-values/6-qualities-make-you-love-magnet-fiff/#sthash.EiNtD0YD.dpuf
This is one of the most common questions our coaching clients ask us. And after Angel and I listen to the specifics of their situation, we often toss a question back at them to further clarify their thoughts and expectations. For instance:
“What do you think a “right relationship” should provide for the people in it?”
Although the answer here is obviously subjective, in all relationships, romantic and platonic alike, there are some clear signs that things are going well. So today, let’s take a look at some signs you’re in the “right relationship,” and corresponding tips that could potentially help you make a “wrong relationship” right:
Even those closest to us can act in confusing and painful ways. Lisa Brookes Kift offers some insight on what might really be going on.
“Crazy” relationship behavior might not be what you think. If you really care about your partner but are being put off by his/her behavior, consider the possibility there’s more there than meets the eye.
I don’t like using the word “crazy” when it comes to labeling people’s behavior but many use the term to describe when they are with someone who is acting in ways they don’t understand. It can be easy to leap to a negative conclusion when you experience boundary violations, desperation or intense need.
"I've been floating around to different blogs tagged with ‘dating’ and ‘relationships’ to see what’s going on in the world. Unfortunately, I’ve seen a lot of hurt and disappointment that could’ve been avoided, had warning signs been recognized.
Too many women get used and hurt by men who are playing with their feelings in order to get what they want, but in reality actually have no intention of commitment or building a relationship together. Do some women do this too? Sure, but in a more “traditional” sense, men are more notorious for saying all the right things they don’t really mean in order to get what they want – so that’s who we’ll focus on here."
"There are many ways we can respond to conflict. We can face it head on and say what we feel, or we can skirt the issue and hold our feelings in. "
My go-to reaction for most of my life was to keep my real feelings on the inside. It didn’t work so well. I inevitably revealed how I really felt in some under-handed way, like sarcasm, rolling my eyes, or simply saying, Nooo, of course nothing’s wrong, I’m fine in a tone that made it pretty clear nothing was right. Sounds pretty nasty, right?
Jody E. Long, Nicholas J.Long, and Signe Whitson have studied passive aggression. In their 2008 book The Angry Smile: The Psychology of Passive-Aggressive Behavior in Families, Schools, and Workplaces, they define it as a deliberate and masked way of expressing covert feelings of anger. NYU Medical Center defines a passive-aggressive individual as someone who “may appear to comply or act appropriately, but actually behaves negatively and passively resists.”
If we take it upon ourselves to see what inside of us they are pointing toward, all grievances become opportunities for healing and loving ourselves.
“Never fear shadows. They simply mean there’s a light shining somewhere nearby.” ~Ruth E. Renkel
My last break-up was on April 16th, 2012.
I remember the date because on the evening of April 17th, as I sat with a blotchy red face and tears in my eyes, my dad told me I soon would remember that day and be glad I was no longer sad. “Men are like buses,” he said. “If one leaves you behind, rest assured another will come.”
I found his support very touching, but it did little to console me. If this guy was a bus, it was the bus I wanted to be on, period. That day, on my dad’s couch for the second night in a row, I slept a total of an hour and cried for about eight.
I found the break-up pretty surprising and abrupt. After not more than a strange feeling, and a day during which I sensed an uncomfortable distance, I said to my then boyfriend, “I feel that you might not be in love with me,” to which he responded, “Maybe.”
PAT NOVAK's insight:
A relationship break-up can be a real shock to your belief system and self-image,
Its even harder when we have abandoned ourselves.during the relationship.
One of the biggest lessons I learned from a break-up, was the importance of Self Care.
I had been programmed to take care of others and not myself.
You've found your soul mate, you've been together for a while, and you feel like you're ready to take it to the next level. Maybe even marriage -- eek! Is he the prefect life-long partner for you? Wouldn't we all love a crystal ball to show us exactly what to expect from a man in the future. I've known women who fretted over doubts all the way up to the altar who went on to enjoy long, fulfilling marriages. And I've known women who were 100 percent sure of their man only to find out they'd ignored some pretty important red flags along the way.
The thing is, sometimes a red flag looks a little, well, gray. And chances are there might be something about your man that makes you wonder a little. But you kind of want to just give him a pass because you don't want to be hypercritical -- and because you really love him, dammit! Sometimes those little things can turn into a big deal later on. Here are 3 red flags you're better off facing right now, before you let things go any further.